Virginia School Forbids Exploration, Discussion, Non-Curriculum Learning

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About Lu Fong

Lu Fong was a staff writer and blog editor for the Good Men Project in its formative years. As the requisite woman on staff, her hobbies included cleaning, cooking, knitting, fainting, and childbearing. Follow her on Twitter @lufong.


  1. Sharon Elin says:

    Quote from post: “Westfield Principal Tim Thomas defended the decision by saying that the teachers “were only trying to be fair. Some students have more help and resources than others. They should not be allowed to use materials classmates cannot get.’ ”

    Wait… what he’s really saying is, let’s level the field at the lowest possible denominator and bring everyone down to that most common level. And that’s fair? No, that’s incredibly reminiscent of the Dark Ages.

    Collaboration, resourceful exchange of ideas… that’s what the real world of learning offers outside the classroom. When I need to know more about something at work, I check with colleagues and research other options; I don’t depend on “what I already know” or refer to a single textbook.

    The intellectual restraints enforced in this AP setting are deplorable –so narrow minded that they are strangling learning (not to mention the love of learning). It’s a highly self-destructive educational model. The problem is, they’ll take a wave of students down with them.

  2. /cry

  3. Yeah, becuase that’s how the “real world” works, right? No one talks, learns, researches, discusses, argues, finds resources, reads, or otherwise engages with their fellow human beings. Right.

  4. Wow. I am floored. The teachers agreed to/wanted this? Whatever happened to the “I had to walk four miles to school in the freezing rain” concept of working toward our goals? You know EVERYONE wasn’t walking this icy trek back in the day. Some kids got there without any trouble whatsoever. That’s the human race, right?

  5. Wow. Just stumbled across this and am absolutely dumbstruck (yet still I type : ) ). It terrifies me to think that this is okay in an AP class of all places.
    We have now been homeschooling for 5 years and I find that, though I still believe that institutionalized education can work, there are so many examples of it *not* working that I have very nearly given up on it.

    I know there are some incredible examples of sacrifice and saintliness in many teachers working today, but somehow I wonder if there individual acts of bravery and courage are any match for a system destined for demoralization and failure.

    I also now question the validity of “drop out” statistics and have begun to wonder if those who choose to “drop out” are in some way making a statement: perhaps they need to be listened to more. Perhaps they have real issues with the institution they are “dropping out” of and, were they more empowered, could affect change in that system or make better choices upon leaving it.


  1. [...] education system is a mess. We’ve covered it before. It’s no secret. Radical measures need to be taken, so a democratic option like the [...]

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